Bookkeepers and accountants both have an important role in the financial aspects of a business, but there are differences between the two as well. The following article will compare and contrast what bookkeepers and accountants do to help better serve your needs.
A Bookkeeper’s main priority is the accuracy and organization of company paperwork and records. They keep track of finances by recording all transactions like revenue intake, money spent, payroll, or any legal expenses that need to be paid for.
These tasks include invoice processing through accounts receivable, creating invoices for clients, receiving payment from clients, managing bills properly which includes writing checks correctly and then filing them into the bookkeeper’s system where they can easily be seen later on if needed.
A Bookkeeper’s daily job duties include recording, classifying, and calculating transactions. They record the date of each transaction along with the type of transaction so it can be looked at later for trends in a business’s financial growth.
Classification is needed to identify where a certain money amount goes, which includes revenue intake from customers being recorded as income and paying vendors or subcontractors through accounts payable. All these records are then calculated into reports containing tables and graphs that show what the specific company is doing financially on a monthly/weekly/yearly basis.
Accountants have their part in helping the company grow by helping determine how much tax should be paid, preparing financial statements that help track a company’s progress using ratios or other tools and having some involvement with budgets by forecasting revenues and expenses.
Accountants go through the bookkeeper’s reports to make sure everything is correct for the financial statements that are being created or changed in any way if needed. They create budgets based on the company’s goals, which are decided by management.
A Bookkeeper’s salary can range from anywhere between $30,000-$70,000 once they have received enough accounting experience. The number of hours worked may depend on if their office is open during business hours or not. An accountant can earn a higher wage between $45,000-$100,000 depending again on their prior work experience and education level achieved.
Their hours tend to be longer because they usually work during business hours at the office, although some have opportunities to work from home or can telecommute if needed.
The main difference between a Bookkeeper and an Accountant is that the bookkeeper has more of an internal focus on working with numbers and organization while accountants take that information and examine it further for management purposes. There are some cases where one can be both but usually, they tend to lean toward one role over the other depending on their education level attained in school.
A bookkeeper’s tasks include organizing records, calculating figures, managing accounts payable/receivable, auditing documents, etc., while an accountant will receive reports from a bookkeeper or vice versa, make sure everything is correct financial statements being created or changed in any way, create budgets based on the company’s goals, assist in preparing tax returns, help with forecasting revenue and expenses, etc.
If a person is interested in accounts payable/receivable or if they have a knack for numbers overall, becoming a bookkeeper would be beneficial since this is where their expertise will shine. Accountants are more interested in looking at financial statements to analyze them further and have an interest in taxes along with budgeting within a business.
In either case, the main goal is to provide accurate information that can help better serve the business’ needs as accurately as possible which should benefit management decisions going forward.